Rosenthal says that the Diamondbacks want to acquire a starting pitcher, but they are not interested in a rental player. Along with Samardzija, he lists them having interest in Yovani Gallardo. The Cubs are very obviously going to be sellers at the trade deadline this year, and guys like Matt Garza, Scott Feldman, Kevin Gregg and Alfonso Soriano are almost surely to be traded.
This is the first time that we have heard Samardzija’s name get brought up in a rumor as he is considered a huge part of the Cubs’ future. That being said, as I discussed when questioning whether the Cubs should trade Starlin Castro, I think the Cubs would be willing to part with any player for the right price. If the Diamondbacks were to offer a huge package of top prospects for Samardzija, I believe that the Cubs would do the deal.
Arizona has a nice farm system. If they are serious about this, they probably do have the horses to get a deal done for Samardzija.
That being said, he will not come cheap by any means. Any deal involving Samardzija to Arizona would have to start with either Tyler Skaggs or Archie Bradley, maybe both. Bradley and Skaggs are considered to be two of the top young pitching prospects in all of baseball. It is almost impossible to say what kind of return that the Cubs would receive for Samardzija, but I bet it would be no less than four young, usable assets.
Samardzija has looked incredible since the Cubs made him a starting pitcher. He looks like a guy that could become a legitimate ace. He is a very important piece to Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer as they look to rebuild this team. The system is severely lacking in the starting pitching department, so that makes Samardzija even more important when it comes to the future of the ball club.
I think that the Cubs would strongly consider trading Samardzija, who has only two years left of arbitration before becoming a free agent. That being said, I cannot stress the high asking price enough. Chances are that the Diamondbacks, or any other team, will not be willing to pay the astronomical asking price that will come with acquiring him.
Having said that, this is worth paying attention to and it would certainly be very interesting to see the return that the Cubs would receive on their ace pitcher. Stay tuned.